Bukit Sion School

Reviving the Spirit of Sumpah Pemuda


One motherland, one nation, one language", was the clamour of young Indonesian nationalists to unify this diverse nation. In unison, the youth pledged their unwavering commitment to uphold solidarity of Indonesia which laid the foundation and guided the country in its tumultuous early years as independent nation. What can we learn from this dauntless resolution of the youth?

First, Indonesians, though culturally diverse and geographically scattered, can unite to achieve national progress. The youth's bold stance against political divisions resulted in national awakening to unite the country. Similarly, young Indonesians at present should stir up the Indonesian spirit of kesatuan as epitomized in the country's motto Bhinneka Tunggal Ika by putting the welfare of the country before their personal interest, enriching cultural values, and promoting tolerance in a multicultural country.

Second, everyone can be a catalyst of change. The youth's revolution was not a mere attempt to express their sentiments; rather, it was a symbol of positive transformation of a country devastated by division of interest, lack of social concern, and fear of change the same conditions that paralyse the country at present. It is a great challenge for young Indonesians to be the change that they want in the country. They should be the embodiment of positive attitude, progressive change, and innovative ideas. Let us not forget that as we commemorate Hari Sumpah Permuda, we also celebrate the youth's achievements in building this nation. The youth are still the trailblazers of national reformation as they were in 1928.

Third, education plays a vital role in perpetuating positive change. Young people should devote their time, energy, and available resources to becoming educated. Along with enhancing their knowledge and skills, they must also realize their moral obligation to contribute to national progress. Many of our young people who studied abroad would prefer to work and eventually live in other countries. While young Indonesians pursue higher education outside the country to be globally-competitive, let us not forget to use thatskills and knowledge to help build this country. Pantur Silaban, whose works were included in international Physics journals published by well-known scientists, came back to Indonesia and taught in several universities what he had learned in his studies in the US. The young Indonesians' ideals and potentials must be nourished and they should be taught how to value their history and celebrate their potentials as prime movers of progressive Indonesia.